The Caribbean island of Haiti has requested the United Nations and the United States to send reinforcements to help secure key infrastructure after the assassination of President Jovenel Moise plunged the country into political turmoil.
A letter from the prime minister’s office dated July 7, the same day Moise was assassinated, was aimed “to support the efforts of the national police aiming to reestablish security and public order in the whole territory”.
For deployment of UN peacekeeping forces or police to Haiti would require authorization from the 15-member UN Security Council.
“We thought that the mercenaries could destroy some infrastructure to create chaos in the country. During a conversation with the US Secretary of State and the UN we made this request,” Haiti’s elections minister Mathias Pierre told AFP news agency.
The United States also confirmed the request. “The Haitian government has requested security and investigative assistance, and we remain in regular contact with Haitian officials to discuss how the United States can assist,” Pentagon spokesman Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Ken Hoffman told the military.com.
The assassination of Moise has plunged the nation into a deep political crisis, which may worsen growing hunger, gang violence and a COVID-19 outbreak.
The White House said it was dispatching senior officials from the FBI and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as soon as possible to assess the situation and see how best they can assist.